Martin Latimer

Martin Latimer

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Following 26
US
Home Alone is an iconic holiday movie.Google Home devices are popular holiday gifts.And so, it kind of makes sense that Google would bring the two together for its latest ad, “Home Alone Again” (which, seriously guys?“Google Home Alone” was right there).The ad has Macaulay Culkin reprise the role of Kevin — but this time, with a more modern, Google Assistant-powered setup.It’s a cute ad, featuring Culkin relying on Google to help with some of the famous bits from the movie, down to a custom “Operation Kevin” routine that automates things like locking the door, moving around a cardboard cutout on a Roomba, and turning on the lights to protect against a Joe Pesci-like thief.
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The immune system is composed of a wide range of different immune cells each with dedicated functions.Natural killer T cells form a specialized immune cell that protects against a variety of diseases such as cancer, autoimmunity, metabolic disease or certain infections such as Lyme disease.This is because of their ability to make very rapidly large amounts of cytokines, which act as major communicators between different cell types.Why natural killer T cells are able to make these molecules so abundantly was unclear.Srinath Govindarajan, Michael Drennan and Dirk Elewaut from the VIB-UGent Inflammation Research Center report in Nature Communications that a stress related pathway inside the endoplasmic reticulum is instrumental in controlling the function of natural killer T cells.This seems to deviate from other immune cells which underscores the selectivity of this mechanism to this particular cell type.
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Cyclonic winds, rushing down from Alaska had nothing else to batter against, so they smacked into the water across miles of open ocean.The winds pushed and ground and heaved against the waves, making them bigger, more sustained and more powerful.By the time these waves reached the U.S. shoreline, they were massive, prompting the National Weather Service (NWS) to issue high-surf alerts up and down the West Coast beginning Sunday (Dec. 16) and in many cases remaining in effect until midday today (Dec. 18).In a tweet from NWS San Francisco, forecasters warned any adventurous Californians, "STAY WELL BACK FROM THE OCEAN OR RISK CERTAIN DEATH."These winds, wrote Marshall Shepherd, director of the University of Georgia's Atmospheric Sciences program and a weather-science writer for Forbes, resulted from a low-pressure system centered in the Gulf of Alaska.In the Northern Hemisphere, he explained, wind whirls counterclockwise around systems like this.
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Russian scientists have come closer to creating a digital system to process speech in real-life sound environment, for example, when several people talk simultaneously during a conversation.The current results of this study were published in a scientific article "Semi-supervised Classifying of Modelled Auditory Nerve Patterns for Vowel Stimuli with Additive Noise".According to the SPbPU experts, the human nervous system processes information in the form of neural responses.The peripheral nervous system, which involves analyzers (particularly visual and auditory) provide perception of the external environment.At the same time, according to researchers, existing speech processing systems are not effective enough and require powerful computational resources.During the study, the researchers developed methods for acoustic signal recognition based on peripheral coding.
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Here are the fungus' impressive stats: It's at least 2,500 years old (although it's likely much older), weighs nearly 882,000 lbs.As for its mutation rate, or the rate at which random genetic tweaks occur, it's fleetingly low, said study co-principal investigator Johann Bruhn, a professor emeritus of plant sciences at the University of Missouri."We think that this slow mutation rate is perhaps key to the genetic stability of the humongous fungus and may even be a key reason for its great longevity," Bruhn told Live Science.[Microscopic Worlds Gallery: See Images of Fascinating Fungi]Bruhn first came across the absolute unit (Armillaria gallica) in the late 1980s, when he was doing an unrelated experiment in the forest of Michigan's Upper Peninsula.He roped in two more fungal experts, James Anderson, now at the University of Toronto, and Myron Smith, now at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada, who are also co-principal investigators on the new study.
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UK
For enterprises concerned about security – and all should be – recognition will long have dawned that email is one of the least secure technologies under the sun.Encrypted group chat alternatives face a range of issues however: they need to ensure that messages can only be read by members of a given group.that full compromise of a node at a point in time does not reveal past messages sent within the group, and they ultimately need to be scalable to the enterprise level: encryption keys can hog bandwidth.More than ten years ago, Alan Duric, then an engineer working with a small team at Global IP Solutions (GIPS) developed the internet Low Bitrate Codec (iLBC).WebRTC has spread globally and forms a core part of most internet communications platforms.Now Duric, currently CTO/COO of of encrypted messenger service Wire, is working on Messaging Layer Security; an end-to-end encrypted protocol being developed by a workgroup of Open Standards organisation the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF).
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UK
Windows 10 is to get a new feature which will allow users to run potentially suspicious apps in a sandbox environment to protect their system from any possible malicious side-effects.Windows Sandbox represents a convenient way to fire up a desktop environment which is completely isolated from the rest of your system, where you can run an executable which you’re concerned about without any fear of collateral damage.The sandbox is a temporary environment, and gives you security without having to go to the trouble of setting up a virtual machine.When the Windows Sandbox is shut down, any software and related files inside are completely deleted.Note that this feature is only coming to Windows 10 Pro and Enterprise, so it’s mainly aimed at businesses and professional users.However, there’s no telling if Microsoft might decide to slip it into other versions of Windows 10, like Home – or at least a similar temporary sandbox feature – in the future.
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“Media is the new store and stores are the new media,” says Klein, on why a brick-and-mortar presence has become a differentiator for retailers.We also spoke about what made this particular holiday season stand out from previous years, the delicate balance between physical and ecommerce, and why Best Buy and Nordstrom are nailing it.What sets 2018 apart from previous years?Michael Klein (MK): What I’m seeing more than ever is retailers using brick-and-mortar as a differentiator or an advantage.They have b8ta pop-ups in their stores, which is kind of like the Sephora of electronics in a way.They’re giving you the opportunity to touch, feel and play with the devices on the floor.
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A very interesting patent spotted by Patently Apple shows that Apple's considered making phones with both Touch ID and Face ID.Apple somewhat zings its own tech while describing why this is needed:"Techniques for implementing biometric authentication using electronic devices are generally cumbersome.For example, some existing techniques, such as those directed to facial recognition, require a user to almost perfectly align a biometric feature in a same manner during both enrollment and each iteration of authentication.Deviation from the alignment of the biometric feature often results in a false negative result."Apple's 3D TrueDepth face scanning is supposed to put an end to that problem, but clearly Apple either thinks it still doesn't work well enough, or is considering having a less sophisticated system on iPhones with a secondary fingerprint option.
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Digital photography has changed a lot over the past two decades, with clunky DSLRs giving way to sleek smartphones.Film was stripped away and digital image sensors took its place, but much of the rest of the camera -- things like lenses, shutters, autofocus systems -- often stayed largely the same.Computational photography, which uses computing technology to improve photos, vaults over the limits of smartphone camera hardware to produce impressive shots."Cameras will change more in the next 10 years than in the past 10," said Lau Nørgaard, vice president of research and development at Phase One, a Danish company that makes ultra-premium 151-megapixel medium-format cameras costing $52,000 apiece.Here's some of what it can do:Combine up to nine frames into a single shot with a technology called HDR+ that captures details in both dark shadows and bright highlights.
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UK
Good Boy Of The Day goes to Ford, which has used its knowledge of noise cancelling tech to create a kennel that protects dogs from firework noise.Fireworks are really stressful for pets, particularly ones with sensitive hearing like dogs.They can hear four times further away than us, and with a much wider range of frequencies.As Ford's touching video about their invention shows, that means fireworks can be a nightmare:"Once microphones inside the prototype kennel detect the sound of the fireworks, a built-in audio system emits opposing frequencies that in effect cancels out the noise completely – or at least reduces it significantly.High-density cork, ideal for sound proofing was an integral part of the design.
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Even as the prequels failed to live up to my expectations, John William's amazing themes helped prop up the films.The music from Star Wars IV: A New Hope still feels fresh no matter how many times I listen to it.And watching it being performed live as you watch the movie is a fantastic experience any Star Wars fan should try.I had the opportunity to attend one such session last week, conducted by Emmy Award winning conductor Mark Watters in Singapore, and I now want to watch the movies with a live orchestra soundtrack.And when the orchestra stops playing, the silence lets you focus more on the dialogue and what's happening in the movie.While it feels like music is constantly playing throughout A New Hope, that's actually not the case.
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If you've ever enjoyed / endured (delete as appropriate) the sounds of a phone's built in speakers on a long journey, then Dirac, the Swedish audio engineers that license their processing tech to other tech brands, have some good news headed your way.It's announced a new feature for mobile devices and small speakers called Dirac Bass which uses audio trickery to make the bass response from your portable devices appear improved.Rather than relying on tiny speakers to deliver rumbling notes at low frequencies, Dirac Bass pushes out additional tones of higher octaves which give the listener the sensation of listening to deeper bass.How low can you go?With the race for thinner phones and smaller bezels seemingly never-ending, Dirac Bass is well positioned to be an important feature for phones looking to push their audio credentials.Providing it works of course – we've yet to hear Dirac Bass in action, with the company aiming to launch the tech in Las Vegas next January at CES 2019.
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UK
What if I told you that your Twitter timeline doesn’t have to be filled with algorithmically selected tweets from three days ago?Actually, it’s been like that for a while—Twitter made a reverse-chronological timeline available in September.But now it’s taking away the permanent option to choose how your timeline is displayed and replacing it with a “Sparkle Button.”Among the top requests for changes to Twitter is for it to return the timeline to the way its founding fathers intended: newest tweets at the top.That means when someone I follow tweets, it should show up in my feed, and when the next person I follow tweets, it should be the next thing that shows up in my timeline.Twitter has followed in the footsteps of Facebook and gradually introduced older tweets you may have missed and popular tweets that you might like into the mix.
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UK
Robbie Williams’ plans to build an underground swimming pool at his London address have been conditionally approved - despite objections from his Led Zeppelin guitarist neighbour Jimmy Page.Planning permission for Robbie’s basement gym and swimming pool, which will be linked to his Grade II listed home, was approved with conditions at a committee meeting at Kensington Town Hall on Tuesday.The decision could put an end to the five-year battle between the celebrity musicians over proposals for 44-year-old Robbie’s home in Melbury road, in Kensington, west London.Jimmy, 74, had raised fears construction work could damage his Grade I listed gothic revival mansion and its ornately decorated interior of stained glass, decorative plasterwork and ceramic tiling.However, work cannot commence until councillors receive assurances about independent monitoring of vibration levels and ground movement as well as the consideration of extra conditions, such as the possibility of workers using only hand tools.They will also discuss whether to ask Robbie for a bond, which could be forfeited if the conditions were breached or if any damage occurs.
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Divers claimed biz knew of defective kit, failed to fix itAs anyone who has gone scuba diving will understand, it is critical that you know how deep you are, how long you have been diving, the air pressure in your tank, and how much air you have left.Without this knowledge, divers risk ascending too quickly, and can get the bends: nitrogen absorbed in body tissue forms bubbles and can cause everything from headaches and joint pain to paralysis and, in extreme cases, death.Which is why two divers, Ralph Huntzinger and Eric Bush, were less than excited when their diving computers, bought from scuba company Aqua Lung and manufactured by Finnish company Suunto, appeared to malfunction and allegedly started displaying the wrong depths, wrong air time left, and wrong air pressure.They soon discovered that their problems were not a one-off, and other divers had complained about the same computers.It is even feared a diver died in 2010 due to a malfunctioning Cobra 2 Suunto computer: the brand new gizmo said the diver, Pamela Seigman, 55, had plenty of air left but her supply had in fact run out, it is claimed, and she drowned.
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On Tuesday, Micromax launched two new smartphones, the first of its new Notch series, the Infinity N11 and Infinity N12.Both devices will be available both online as well as in major offline retail stores across the country starting December 25.So far, the company has only announced the colour variants of the Infinity N12- Blue Lagoon, Velvet Red, and Viola.The variants for the Infinity N11 are still unknown.Both phones feature a 6.19-inch HD+ (720x1500 pixels) notched display, with 18.9:9 aspect ratio.There is a dual rear camera with identical specs on both devices- one 13MP sensor and another 5MP sensor.
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China
Chinese startup Luckin Coffee is planning a tie-up with Meituan Dianping to deliver coffee and other food products through the on-demand giant’s delivery network in China, according to people familiar with the situation.The planned tie-up comes after global coffee giant Starbucks announced a partnership with Alibaba’s food-delivery arm Ele.me in August to carry out deliveries in China.The proposed partnership would reportedly allow users in over 20 Chinese cities to order from tech-enabled cafe Luckin through Meituan Waimai, Meituan Dianping’s delivery app.Customers currently place their coffee and food orders through Luckin’s app, with delivery fulfilled by logistics firm SF-Express.“For Luckin, [the deal means] it can expand further from offline to online in the coffee retail business,” said Zhang Yi, CEO of mobile internet consultancy iiMedia Research Institute.“For Meituan, it might not be aiming for more orders from Luckin […] but it wants to send a signal to other warm food providers that it can deliver a cup of warm coffee in a timely manner.”
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A team of engineers at the University of Delaware has developed a method to use CRISPR/Cas9 technology to set off a cascade of activities in cells, a phenomenon known as conditional gene regulation.Gene editing with CRISPR technology has been called "one of the biggest science stories of the decade" for its applications to medicine, agriculture and much more.CRISPR allows scientists to precisely target and edit DNA within living cells, which could help them correct anomalies that cause inherited diseases.However, until now, scientists hadn't figured out how to program their CRISPR systems to target DNA while integrating information from within the cells they were studying.At UD, Wilfred Chen, the Gore Professor of Chemical Engineering, and graduate student Ka-Hei Siu designed structures -- dubbed toehold-gated gRNA (thgRNA)-- for targeted gene regulation in E. coli bacteria.Traditionally, in CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing, scientists use a single-stranded piece of ribonucleic acid (RNA) to guide the Cas9 enzyme to the deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) they want to target.
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AT will become the first US carrier to roll out a mobile 5G network, starting on Friday.AT's mobile 5G network will only be available in 12 cities to start with, with seven additional cities in the first half of 2019.Since no mobile devices currently support 5G networks, AT's 5G service will be accessible via a mobile hotspot made by Netgear, priced at $500.Certain AT customers will be able to use the internet on the carrier's new 5G network starting this Friday in 12 cities across seven US states, making it the first domestic carrier to roll out a commercially available mobile 5G service.In the spring of 2019, AT customers who live in cities that support AT's 5G network will be able to buy a 5G mobile hotspot, made by Netgear, for $500.The 5G service plan itself will include 15GB of data for $70 per month.
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